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Prevalence of age-related macular degeneration in rural southern China: the Yangxi Eye Study
  1. Guangming Jin1,
  2. Xiaohu Ding1,
  3. Wei Xiao1,
  4. Xiao Xu2,
  5. Lanhua Wang1,
  6. Xiaotong Han1,
  7. Ou Xiao1,
  8. Ran Liu1,
  9. Wei Wang1,
  10. William Yan3,
  11. Lei An2,
  12. Jialiang Zhao4,
  13. Mingguang He1,3
  1. 1 State Key Laboratory of Ophthalmology, Zhongshan Ophthalmic Center, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou, 510060, China
  2. 2 Rehabilitation Administration Department, National Institute of Hospital Administration, Chinese National Health and Family Planning Commission, Beijing, China
  3. 3 Centre for Eye Research Australia; Ophthalmology, Department of Surgery, University of Melbourne, East Melbourne, Australia
  4. 4 Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences, Peking Union Medical College Hospital, Beijing, China
  1. Correspondence to Professor Jialiang Zhao, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences, Peking Union Medical College Hospital , #1 Dongjiaomin Street, Dongcheng District, Beijing 100730, China; 13501132676{at} and Dr Mingguang He, State Key Laboratory of Ophthalmology, Zhongshan Ophthalmic Center, #54 Xianlie South Road, Yuexiu District, Guangzhou 510060, People’s Republic of China; mingguanghe{at}


Purpose To describe the prevalence of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) among older adults in rural southern mainland China.

Methods Eligible persons aged 50 years or over were identified by geographically defined cluster sampling from Yangxi County, Guangdong Province, China. Participants underwent a standardised interview and comprehensive eye examinations from August to November in 2014. Digital retinal photographs were graded for AMD lesions using the Clinical Classification of Age-Related Macular Degeneration developed by the Beckman Initiative for Macular Research Classification Committee. Age-standardised prevalence of AMD and AMD lesions was calculated using the 2010 world population data and compared with those of other populations.

Results Of 5825 subjects who participated (90.7% response rate), 4881 (83.8%) had fundus photographs gradable for AMD. Early, intermediate and late AMD were present in 2003 (41.0%), 879 (18.0%) and 42 (0.86%) participants. The age-standardised prevalence of early, intermediate and late AMD was 40.4% (95% CI 39.6% to 41.2%), 17.6% (95% CI 17.0% to 18.2%) and 0.79% (95% CI 0.65% to 0.95%), respectively. Total AMD was more prevalent in men than in women (62.8% vs 57.1%).

Conclusions AMD is an important public health concern for rural southern China, and the prevalence of AMD was higher in men than in women.

  • prevalence
  • age-related macular degeneration
  • Rural China

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  • Contributors Conception and design of the study (MH, JZ); analysis and interpretation (GJ, XD, WX); writing of the article (GJ, WW, WY); critical revision of the article (LA, XX, MH, JZ); data collection (GJ, XD, WX, LW, XH, OX, RL, WW); administrative, technical or logistic support (XX, MH, JZ).

  • Funding This work was supported by National Institute of Hospital Administration, Chinese National Health and Family Planning Commission under ORBIS International North Asia (Beijing, China) contract no 1541. MH receives support from Fundamental Research Funds of the State Key Laboratory in Ophthalmology, Science and Technology Planning Project of Guangdong Province 2013B20400003. MH receives support from the University of Melbourne at Research Accelerator Program and the CERA Foundation. The Centre for Eye Research Australia receives Operational Infrastructure Support from the Victorian State Government.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

  • Ethics approval Zhongshan Ophthalmic Center Institutional Review Board Sun Yat-sen University.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data sharing statement Original data are available on request. Please contact the corresponding author for further information.

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